What’s the point of an Exit Interview?
While any search on the internet will give you a list of routine questions you can use as a checklist for your discussion through the exit interview, a much better option is to have an open and honest conversation. It should be an opportunity for the employee to feel comfortable voicing why they are leaving.
Their are certain legalities that need to be covered, but this conversation should also be used as an opportunity for the employer to show the employee that they were valued and to learn how the company can improve the way it supports staff.
It is important to remember not to take anything said personally, and not to get defensive regarding criticism towards the company, you, or other employees.
How can you re-frame the conversation?
Often the first question asked is simply, “Why are you leaving?” It could easily be rephrased as, “What made you start looking for another job in the first place?” By changing the approach, you will open this question up for further discussion, providing you with valuable feedback that can help you improve the workplace.
When you ask employees to speak honestly about their experience with the company and why they are leaving, be sure to remind your employee that their conversation will be kept confidential and is purely for the improvement of the company.
Don’t waste the information you get from this conversation. All too often the exit interview is filed in the personnel file never to be seen again. An HR manager at an insurance company said that her company uses the information from these conversations to view trends. Using the information this way can help the company identify the reason employees are leaving.
So what are the best questions to have on hand to help you keep the conversation on the right track?
Exit Interview Questions
1. How did your job here match your expectations?
You want to be sure that the job description and selection criteria are both written correctly.
2. Did you feel that the work you were doing aligned with your personal goals and interests?
Employees should always feel like they’ve been given the opportunity to improve and advance their skills.
3. Did you have the tools and resources you needed to effectively do your job?
This will give you the opportunity to find out if the employee would suggest newer or additional tools as well as further training.
4. Would you recommend this as a great place for a friend to work?
This type of question will really open the employee up to give you a more honest answer. They may feel the need to move on, but they would only recommend the company if their overall experience was positive.
5. What would you have changed about your job here if you could?
Asking what someone in the role wanted to change will give you insight on how to tweak the role to make it more attractive for future employees.
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